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Sports Minneapolis Announces Erika L. Binger as Board Chair

Via a December 11 e-announcement:

Sports Minneapolis, powered by Meet Minneapolis, is pleased to announce Erika L. Binger as the new chair of the Sports Minneapolis Advisory Board, with a term starting January 1, 2019. Binger is the founder of V3 Sports, a Minnesota-based nonprofit organization that provides access and expands opportunities for urban and under-represented youth and their community through athletics and academics. Building on the work of previous Board chairpersons Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and longtime Taylor Corp. executive Rob Moor, the addition of Binger is an exciting step forward as Sports Minneapolis continues its work to bring professional, collegiate and amateur sporting events to the community for the economic benefit of the region.

“Erika is exceptionally well-qualified to lead the Sports Minneapolis Advisory Board,” said Melvin Tennant, Executive Director of Sports Minneapolis and President and CEO of Meet Minneapolis. “As an invested member of our community and triathlete, she has a keen understanding of how sports can strengthen a community. Erika’s vision will continue to enhance our Sports Minneapolis mission for the benefit of everyone in the Twin Cities area.” 

“Sports Minneapolis is a perfect fit for my passion for our region and athletics. From the excitement of big events like the Super Bowl and the upcoming NCAA® Final Four to collegiate and amateur competitions, sports can be a pathway to success for a community,” stated Binger. “I’m very focused on the opportunities sports can bring from both an economic standpoint and personal development. Chairing the Sports Minneapolis Advisory Board is an exciting opportunity for me to continue my mission of giving back to the community.”

Binger began V3 Sports nearly 10 years ago with a vision of building a High-Performance Center to expand opportunities for under-served youth in North Minneapolis. The state-of-the-art training complex will include a much-needed aquatics facility. Binger has been involved in sports her entire life as an athlete, coach, and athletic director. Binger also currently serves on the boards of organizations such as the Flathead Lake Biological Station, McKnight Foundation, Minnesota United FC, the National Sports Center and We IMPACT!

Also joining the Sports Minneapolis Advisory Board is Mark Schindele, Senior Vice President, Target Properties. Schindele adds expertise through his work at Target and his role on the Executive Board of the Minneapolis Downtown Council.

The current Sports Minneapolis board also includes: 

  • Lester Bagley – Executive Vice President of Public Affairs, Minnesota Vikings
  • Jim Denn – Vice President and General Sales Manager, FOX Sports North/FOX Sports Wisconsin
  • Kip Elliott – Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer / Chief Financial Officer, Minnesota Twins
  • Jacob Frey – Mayor of Minneapolis
  • John Guagliano – Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications, Minnesota United FC
  • Mitch Helgerson – Senior Vice President, Marketing and Ticket Sales, Minnesota Wild
  • Jeff Johnson – Executive Director, Minneapolis Convention Center
  • Ted Johnson – Chief Strategy Officer, Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx
  • Tom McGinnis – Senior Associate Athletics Director, University of Minnesota
  • Rob Moor – Director, Taylor Corp.
  • Sandy Sweetser – Senior Director, Marketing and Event Services, Target Center
  • Patrick Talty – General Manager, U.S. Bank Stadium/SMG
  • Melvin Tennant – President and CEO, Meet Minneapolis

Sports Minneapolis has played a leading role in securing sports events of all sizes. Examples of the large-scale events include: 2014 MLB All-Star Game, 2017 USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships, and 2018 Super Bowl LII, as well as ESPN’s X Games (2017-2020) and the 2018 WNBA All-Star Game.

Board members have helped Sports Minneapolis extend its winning streak for years to come by partnering with event rights holders to assist with venue selection, event services, volunteer identification, marketing and promotional support, and on-site recognition opportunities to ensure a successful event.  Exciting events now and into the future include:

  • NCAA Women’s Division I Volleyball Championship at Target Center (December 2018)
  • NCAA Men’s Final Four (April 2019)
  • ESPN’s X Games (2019, 2020)
  • NCAA Wrestling Championships (March 2020)
  • NCAA Men’s Basketball Regional (March 2021)
  • NCAA Women’s Final Four (April 2022)


Sports Minneapolis, which is part of Meet Minneapolis, is focused on recruiting, enhancing and producing sporting events in the Minneapolis area for the benefit of our community. In addition to generating significant estimated economic impact, amateur and professional sports events can help connect the community through sport, fostering health and wellness.

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